Thursday, December 14, 2017

Shut up and do the job

Like all Trinbagonians, I awoke to stunned disbelief at the news of the horrific assassination of one of our country’s brightest legal lumina­ries, Dana Seetahal, last Sunday.

After quietly wishing she rest in peace with her Creator, my mind turned to ponder whether this heinous crime would be solved. And I desperately hoped this time—given this most brazen, unprecedented and wanton disrespect for the rule of law in Trinidad and Tobago—the merciless killers would be brought swiftly to justice. 

But, if what I am reading in the papers from where I am—7,000 miles away—is correct, I am fearful that once again our hapless Police Service will chalk up another unsolved murder to add to the abysmal four to five per cent detection rate I imagine firmly places the investigative prowess of our men and women in grey at very close to the bottom of the totem pole relative to that of developed societies.

Consider: first we hear military weapons with 5.62 mm ammunition were used. This information was ascribed to the police at the scene, only to learn the autopsy confirmed handguns were used. 

Then we read a police officer has tipped off one of the suspects who has gone underground. Who is this faceless officer who has damned the uniform he is wearing? If true, has he been instantly cashiered? Name him!

We also hear the main suspect has been operating with “impunity” for years. This one nearly gave me a heart attack! 

“Impunity”, Commissioner? Really, Commissioner? A killer known to the police has been allowed to roam with “impunity”?

Ours is a country of about 2,000 square miles and we cannot find this man? But why am I not surprised? Isn’t it passing strange that the police always say, when the criminal is dead, he was “well known to the police”?

Next comes information that cellphone calls are being analysed as well as CCTV cameras, and footage from a citizen who was on the scene, unknown to the assailants.

Why are the investigations being leaked, blow by blow, in the media? If I were a betting man, I would bet Mr Main Killer is already out of the country. I cannot fathom why, for God’s sake, the police don’t shut up and conduct their job with ruthless efficiency.

Again, I preface my disgust with the police on the premise that the newspaper reports are accurate. If they are not, then I unreservedly apologise to the Commissioner and his team of investigators.

If the reports are accurate, however, then this latest public display of Keystonian Cop behaviour should hasten the exit from office of the Commissioner.

Andrew McIntosh

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